Saturday, 2 June 2012

Roadtrip 2012: Days 1 to 4

The following is typed from my at the time writings on the bus. More to follow when I get a chance.

Day 1:
Up at 6:44am – well before my 7:30 alarm – after crashing at 3am. Coffee, cleaned the apartment and started putting the final odds and ends into my bags. I’, still worried about overages. I wonder if i can re-organise my smaller bag. Was a little late leaving apartment, but made good time to the city. Unloaded the car where I am staying the night and then off to the dentist. This was a brief dental visit, which is good, and stopped in to visit a friend who gave me a travel pillow and blanket for  the trip J
Picked up some snacks for the road. I’m tired though. A good dinner with friends and relaxing evening before the daunting part of this trip starts for me. Will be up at 5:30 to make sure I’m at the greyhound by 6:30/6:45 – which is an hour before departure. Not sure about how i will sleep on the bus.

Day 2
5:30am – can you say hangover? Entirely too much red wine, and definitely not enough sleep. Windsor is also experiencing a heat wave. Will be glad to be out of here.
6:30am Another panic moment about baggage overages. 11kgs for carry on? Seriously? I can see myself leaving some stuff in Calgary or having it shipped home.
The bus station is practically deserted at this time of day. A few rather suspect looking people around. Apparently arriving an hour early was a waste of time. Really wish the bus would get here as I hate waiting at the best of times. This is worsened by the fact that I am tired, I have a headache and I’m already dripping sweat at 7-ish in the morning, let alone the baggage concern.
8:00am-ish  My fears of baggage hell disappeared. They didn’t even weigh the bags or measure them – neither did I have to go through a security check – after all that worrying.
The first bus was pretty full, but I managed to get a double seat to myself the first leg, until we reached London and took on more passengers. They also changed drivers here, and the London driver got quite abrupt and rude with another passenger, with some of his “barked” instructions at passengers.
London to Yorkdale was relatively uneventful, and the bus picking us up in Yorkdale was a tad late in arriving. This driver at least is friendly, and jovial.
We’ll be stopping in Parry Sound for a brief break – which I’m looking forward to – my ass hurts! And this bus shakes a great deal – although I think it’s predominantly from the road itself.
I had forgotten how much rockier the scenery is here – the roads seemingly sliced through large boulders. We’ve now driven through two thunderstorms today, and its overcast and dark – but it’s not nearly as humid on the stops as it was in Windsor.
The stop at Parry Sound proved expensive. A burger and Fries came to $ 11, and while the burger was decent, the fries left a little to be desired. Can you say extortion? Every stop you are captive to whatever store is at the stop – and have no choice but to pay what they ask for whatever you want.
I have been napping a lot on this trip so far. I hope I can sleep during the long stretch from Sault Ste Marie to Thunder Bay, because it would suck if I was awake all night.
Just finished reading “Woof!” By Michael Douglas, and started reading “Grrr” but, as it basically appears to be puppy erotica, I decided to hold off on this and perhaps read it to the pups as bedtime or quiet time stories – the accounts in the book will no doubt cause the puppies varied reactions – and I can gauge their levels of interest in the scenes described.
Sudbury sucks. Just saying. Waiting outside a run-down shack which is the greyhound station, waiting for the next leg of this seemingly endless tour, which has at least one good thing – I get to see my friends again whom I haven’t in a few years. So that’s something good to make the trip from Sudbury more worth-while.
Two things are bugging me at this point. Firstly, my ass hurts, and I haven’t quite yet figured out how to make myself more comfortable. Secondly – I appear to be constipated. Oh joy.
The bus which was to leave Sudbury at 6:30 arrived at 6:43, and then took another half an hour to load and leave. This will affect the rest of this journey, no doubt.

Day 3
Actually slept quite a lot last night, waking at each stop to get our and stretch and walk a bit while having a smoke or two. Kinda nice that I got 2 seats to myself – or i wouldn’t have been able to sleep so well I don’t think.
Seeing my friends in Sault Ste Marie was awesome – Even though it was so brief – yeah – we were running late – so the driver was all in a hurry – but time, even if brief is awesome J
For the record – this tiny town somewhere between Sault Ste Marie – is a bloody rip off. $ 2.75 for a small cup of coffee. A small bottle of coke was the same price... Next time, no coffee and will stock up on coke at the dollar store.
Thunder Bay. Had just arrived and was finishing my first smoke when my friend of 12 years online, Ryan, pulled in. He’s even hotter in person! I had to strongly resist the urge to shove my tongue down his throat and manhandle his thick beard. In many ways he is my type through and through: Masculine, bearish, smoker, pig and gear-nut. I had an hour to kill while they cleaned and refuelled the bus. So Ryan took me to his family’s diner, we had coffee and English muffins, and time was up so he drove me back to the bus.
Sad that an hour can go so fast. I want to molest him badly. Definitely going to try and figure a way to come up here again and spend a day or two with him. Cute, hot, sexy little fucker!! WOOOOF!
Leaving Thunder Bay has so far been a nightmare – all sorts of road closures due to heavy rains they have had the last few days, which have washed out many of the bridges and roads. Apparently, Thunder Bay is on a “don’t flush, don’t shower and no laundry” advisory until water levels subside.
As we approach Winnipeg, I realise I have now been on a bus for at least 36 hours. And that will be roughly 62 by my calculations when my trip is done. I have managed since last night to keep a double seat to myself, but I guess that could change in Winnipeg, as we change busses there too.
Physically my body is ready for this to be over. Try as I might at each stop to move around, the pain my lower back and ass is getting worse. I think tonight is time for back pain pills.
Winnipeg sucked – our bus was late and actually arrived very close to the official departure of the next bus, and we were hustled into the terminal, and then, for the first time on this journey,  security checked. This was painless, but lengthy and thorough. No smoke break though – so by the time we had our next smoke break, it had been almost 7 hours since my last one. Head-rush – and while not happy about it – I did survive. One bonus is that the new bus has more comfortable seats, which also seem a little further apart, so a little more leg room.
Stopped somewhere late and the only food available was sandwiches. So i got a ham and cheese and a bottle of coke. $ 8.50.... I’m definitely packing more of my own food on the trip home!

Day 4 – The end is nigh
I managed to sleep most of the night – even sleeping through some of the brief stops along the way. Saskatoon was flat and dull, and I bought a coffee (only $ 1.25 this time!) before stepping out for a smoke. Discovered that one of my companions on this journey is celebrating his birthday, so bought him a coffee too.
Stopped in North...something or other... for a brief smoke break, and there are these two chatty girls on the bus, apparently sisters. One of them thinks I am a cop, and says I look like one – in stature. Then she started saying how much she wished she had weed. I just walked away without saying a word. Let her believe I am a cop, it was a bit of an ego boost.
Arrived in Edmonton. Final Bus change – except – we are half an hour late. The connecting bus has already left without me, and about 6 other passengers on my bus. SO they issue us tickets on the Greyhound Express via Red Deer to Calgary. I noticed just in time that the woman had issued me a ticket to red deer only, not Calgary. She was super apologetic, and corrected the problem.
The greyhound express busses have leather seats, wi-fi (not that that us any use to me) and power outlets. All was ok until Red Deer, when they added more passengers and I lost my double seat. Cramped and painful last leg – but at this point – seeing the pup is all that matters. I tried to call him from Red Deer – but the payphone wanted $ 4.75 for the call. I’m sure he will wait. Will admit I can’t feel a part of my right leg – which worries me – and pins and needles in my left leg – sure that will go away.

I will add more to this as a separate post later today or tomorrow sometime.

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